I’m nine days into my self-proclaimed year of making and I’ve discovered that I don’t give myself enough credit. I am a constant maker. And not in the ways that you’d traditionally think of.

parlor fireplace from Shalavee.com


My devotion to everyday making seems to need me to provide pictorial proof of daily making. I’m already an habitual poster of one picture a day to Instagram so I’ve no problem with the daily showing and telling.

Pictures of us on Shalavee.com

The first couple days of the month were taken up with cooking our meals and catering for a special dinner we were having. I rediscovered that I cook a lot more and better than I think I do. Cooking just got taken off the taken for granted list.

cooking on Shalavee.com

Then I realized, part of my regular making is writing and publishing something new at least three times a week. I am compelled to take original photos for everything so I guess my picture-taking making has to represent the writing. That’s a two for one.

Heloo my name is Minnie on Shalavee.com

And then yesterday, my daily life hit the fan, as it tends to do with a toddler taking your full attention and then refusing to nap. In fact as she’s offering a repeat performance of that now. A poopie diaper trumps a nap and we’re done.

Where the nappies get changed on Shalavee.com

There was honestly and literally not a moment when I was able to think of myself or of creating or making anything. I was woken up at 5:45, robbed of her nap which then forced me to go for a ride to guarantee one, and performed all the other mundanities throughout the day that make me an uber-wife and Mom all while not allowing my brains to erupt all over the walls. But I panicked that I never “made” anything.

But then I changed my mind.

The bookshelves on Shalavee.com

I realized I make a lot of stuff.

I make the bed.

I make the breakfast.

I make decisions constantly.

I make up for lost time.

I make sure the toenails of my children are not disgustingly long.

I make phone calls to straighten up miscommunications and make appointments.

I make sure there’s enough milk.

I make lunch.

I make the laundry clean again.

I make mistakes and then try not to berate myself for doing so.

Mark's chest on Shalavee.com

I make my children laugh.

I make dirt disappear from the bathrooms.

I make dinner.

I make my husband feel guilty.

I make sense of toddler speak.

I make sense of the senseless.

I make my health a priority.

I make no money.

I make sure my children’s hair is washed.

I make my children feel safe.

I make a bed time snack.

I make use of what little time and brain clarity I have left to do something for me.

I make it look easy.

tray in the parlor on Shalavee.com

Making sense of my purpose on this planet is easy. It’s these children foremost now. And yet there’s so much more in my soul to make and give and get out of my life. The daily making challenge is my way of upping my consciousness of and my accountability for my creative self. A different perspective is never a bad thing. Practicing the act of creating has given me new permission to be happy.

And lastly, I realize that it’s quite alright if there’s a gap or two in the pictures to this process. That daily picture on Instagram is, in and of itself, an act of making. and this act is for me. But I may have to take some bad pictures for myself here and there to prove I did do this. Process and perfection don’t always need to share a bunk bed.

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  1. No matter how committed or creative someone is, there will always be days when it just doesn’t (or can’t) quite come together. ESPECIALLY when that creative someone is responsible for lots of other lives. Those days just make the creative days that much sweeter!

    1. Yes, and i think we are the ones in charge of prioritizing our need to create. And mothering in and of itself is a creative endeavor where the product isn’t necessarily visible or tangible. Thanks Suzonne as i consider you an expert on this subject.
      Love ya’,

  2. I love your list of all the things you make, Shalagh. Now, that’s putting into perspective. I remember those days of driving to get the nap in. Both of my kids were poor nappers! I don’t envy you. Be good to yourself. You’re awesome! Whatever you touch turns into something beautiful.

    1. Thanks Amy. The naps come and then get foiled. It’s a fact that’s hard when there’s no childcare. I do so appreciate your support. Keep on keeping on.

    1. What a difference the gift of perspective makes Dawn. To value myself and my efforts and talents wasn’t always a given. And I was so excited to have given myself permission to create, I was thrilled to take this project on. But I have to watch myself because I can be such a perfectionist. And this is me busting myself for my devaluing perfectionistic ways. Hope you have a happy making moments today, even if it’s just making the bed. Ha!

  3. Sometimes it pays to remind ourselves. I have no desire, nor capacity to be an uber housewife….I am constantly failing it. There is always a pile of dishes, and always a pile of washing, I feel like I am constantly folding and constantly washing up. But then I remind myself that I am also supposed to be having an agreed 6 months of focus ON MY ART so anyone who wants to criticise that my housewifery is far from uber can remember that before I go and work again. That said, focusing on my stuff always comes after focusing on the toddler….

    1. Oh well said Andrea! Your art and your toddler are always waayy more important than the housework. I hate the relentlessness and the endlessness of house work and parenting. But maybe it’s our expectations that need to be adjusted. But what if I expect it to always be there but I allow for Fridays off? So I jam out on Thursdays and most days I just do one mixed color load and fold them immediately when dry then who cares when they get put away. I think it’s all in the way that you look at it and tweak the systems. And we are the only ones criticizing our housework by the way.
      I love you funky art. Hope you are feeling your soul expand because of it.
      Thank you so much for being here.
      Love Ya’,

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